The importance of have a contact between companies and their consumers through social networks ( Facebook , Twitter, etc. ) can now be considered a consensus among experts in digital marketing. Direct and very personal communication with customers, provided by such, is a great attraction for the use of such technology by companies. But today there are some other forms of communication that also have great ability to attract and retain customers. One called online community
Online communities are web spaces used by some people to be in contact with others and communicate. As the concept of community indicates, people are connected together by a common interest and, from there, you can place and develop relationships. This link is usually the territory or culture in which the person is.
In the case of online communities, this link between people can be an idol, a hobby in common, a particular product or a brand or company. Therefore, this type of interaction is different from the media, since it presupposes a purpose. Communication between people arises from a common point in particular.
Some companies are realizing the importance of creating environments of this type for a closer relationship with the consumer. Within that community, companies can create channels to listen opinions and criticisms from their customers, communicate easily and quickly with them, create interactive activities and get good ideas on how to improve their products and services.
In addition to these benefits, online communities also help companies increase customer journey. The company will offer another communication channel to the customer and an opportunity even to know the company’s products and services as well as to acquire them. Since customers are spending more time in contact with the concepts and content, it is possible to build up an emotional relationship with the brand and creating what is called “brand advocate”.
For a successful online community, it is important that you recruit the largest possible number of consumers or interested in participating. Offer them interesting content about things related to your products or services. Then, incentive them to participate in topics and forums (usually with questions). Moreover, it is important that you are always aware of what users are doing in your community, to monitor the content they are producing and to promptly answer their questions and considerations.
Online communities are generally continuous and the whole of the organization. But they can be made to a specific product for a specific time or for a particular campaign. Depending on the purpose that the company has at the moment. But regardless of the format and community life , it is very important that organizations are very attentive to the growth of this new online communication strategy. And they are ready to build more that bridge in the relationship with the consumer.